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Pakistani Human Smuggler Arrested in U.S.

PHILADELPHIA, PA – A Pakistani citizen who headed up a ring which facilitated the movement of undocumented South Asians traveling from Central America to the U.S. border to seek asylum, was deported Dec. 19 by Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Sharafat Ali Khan, 33, was identified by ICE as the Brazilian-based facilitator of what the agency termed an “alien smuggling organization.” He has been turned over to Pakistani authorities.

From 2014 to 2016, more than 100 people arrested by ICE’s Homeland Security Investigations and the FBI identified Khan as their smuggler.

Khan focused on people from Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Afghanistan, and transported them through South and Central America into the U.S.

The ICE investigation revealed that Khan and his co-conspirators charged each alien between $3,000 and $15,000 to facilitate their travel to the United States. Several of the individuals smuggled by Khan’s organization had suspected ties to terrorist organizations, alleged ICE in a press statement.

On June 1, 2016, the Brazilian Federal Police executed a search warrant at Khan’s residence in Brazil. Khan fled the country the following day and attempted to travel to Pakistan via Doha, Qatar on a commercial flight.

On June 3, 2016, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia issued an arrest warrant for Khan, charging him with conspiracy to encourage or induce an alien to enter the U.S. for financial gain. On the same date, authorities at Hamad International Airport in Doha detained Khan pursuant to the warrant. He was then extradited from Qatar to the United States through Washington Dulles International Airport, and U.S. Customs and Border Protection paroled Khan into the United States for criminal prosecution.

On Oct. 17, 2017, DCDC convicted Khan of conspiracy to defraud the United States and encourage or induce an alien for commercial advantage or private financial gain. He was sentenced to 31 months’ in prison with credit for time served since June 3, 2016.

ICE then lodged an immigration detention order which would deport Khan after he served his sentence.